Research Monitor

Understanding China’s Approaches to International Development

2014/10 – Institute of Development Studies (IDS); Authors: Jing Gu, Yunnan Chen and Yanbing Zhang

China’s impressive economic growth and increasing development activities overseas, particularly in the African continent, have spurred intense debate and criticism over its role as a rising power in international development. China is viewed in the West both as a threat, but also as a valuable potential partner in development cooperation. However, differences between Western and Chinese conceptions of foreign aid and development have complicated cooperation and understanding of China’s development and aid structures. Further knowledge of these differences is needed, in order to evaluate their implications for low-income countries, and for potential trilateral cooperation.


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Linking Results-based Aid and Capacity Development Support. Conceptual and Practical Challenges



2014/10 - Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE); Authors: Niels Keijzer and Heiner Janus 

The most recent addition to the development cooperation toolbox is results-based aid (RBA), a development cooperation modality that disburses grants or loans in response to the achievement of pre-defined results. There are ongoing experiments in the use of RBA, as well as ongoing research efforts to determine under what conditions and circumstances it can be effective. An underexplored question is how RBA interventions relate to capacity development support (CDS) on conceptual and practical levels. This question is important because “capacity gaps” are frequently put forward by donors as a justification for external CDS. Therefore, how does the introduction of RBA interact with CDS within the broader portfolio of aid modalities? And what are the potential challenges and implications? 

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Improving Access to International Climate Finance within sub-Saharan Africa



2014/09 – Overseas Development Institute (ODI); Author: Neil Bird

This paper provides an overview of how international public funding is accessed by recipient countries in order to secure public policy goals, and in particular the national response to climate change. It focuses on the concept of direct access, as it applies to funding originating from multilateral sources and considers how access might be improved and made more efficient. Direct access has become a focus within the debate on how the international community can support those countries particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The paper takes a regional approach and examines how these issues are playing out in sub-Saharan Africa.

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